For more than 30 years, the Blue Diamond Technology Awards have celebrated the best in technology innovation and talent in the greater Charlotte region. On October 6, the Charlotte Area Technology Collaborative (CATC) presented Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont with the award for Human Capital – representing an individual or group who has made major contributions in the development of IT talent in the region.
“It is such an honor to have received a Blue Diamond Award and to be among all of the impressive finalists. We appreciate the recognition by industry leaders of Goodwill as a destination for technology training and talent,” said Dr. Dana McDonald, vice president of talent development for Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont. “We especially thank the community we serve because these training programs are funded by donating and shopping in our stores. We also thank our large corporate donors who support these programs – the Cognizant U.S. Foundation, Google and Microsoft.”
At Goodwill, we know that skills-based trainings, like those offered through Goodwill University, can lead to long-term economic mobility for individuals, their families, and our community. That’s why for years, Goodwill has provided computer and employability skills training, including basic computer literacy for those living in the digital divide, and productivity tools courses for middle-skills jobs. In 2018, thanks to additional support from Grow with Google and the Cognizant U.S. Foundation, Goodwill expanded its digital skills trainings to provide new advanced courses to individuals who qualify, free of charge. Recent advanced IT offerings have focused on A+ certification/helpdesk support, cloud technology, code immersion, Salesforce and web development, to name a few.
Through our work with employers, we know there is a significant need in the Charlotte region for these professionals. The IT courses offered at Goodwill are helping people make themselves more marketable with valuable skills that coincide with in-demand careers in our area. In 2019 alone, 171 participants completed advanced IT training courses through Goodwill, earning an average starting salary of $18.21/hour.
In addition to no-cost training, Goodwill also provides its participants with:
- Access to technology to successfully complete the courses
- Case management, job placement support, and job retention assistance
- Paid vouchers for certification exams
- Free access to practice quizzes and online learning materials
- and resume building and interview prep support.
Do you know someone interested in increasing their technology skills, or advancing their career? Click here to view our current course offerings, or click here to learn more about our services and make an appointment with a career specialist.